EB-1, First Preference

First Preference Priority Workers include Individuals of Extraordinary Ability, Outstanding Professors or Researchers, and Multinational Managers and Executives

EB-1A: Individuals of Extraordinary Ability

Individuals with extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics can bypass a PERM labor certification application.

To qualify under this category the individual should be at the “top of his/her field of endeavor,” as demonstrated by sustained national or international acclaim, which should be evidenced through extensive documentation. The alien should continue to work in the same extraordinary ability field and provide proof of how he or she would substantially benefit the U.S. prospectively. The law provides that receipt of the Nobel Prize or, more commonly, at least three of the following types of evidence from the list below are needed to satisfy the criteria.

Note that the submitted documentation must relate to and support the specific case presented to the USCIS.

  • Documentation of the alien’s receipt of lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field of endeavor.
  • Documentation of the alien’s membership to associations in the field for which classification is sought, which require outstanding achievements of their members as judged by recognized national or international experts in their disciplines or fields.
  • Evidence of the alien’s participation, either individually or on a panel, as a judge of the work of others in the same or an allied field of specification for which classification is sought.
  • Published material about the alien in professional or major trade publications or other major media, relating to the alien’s work in the field for which classification is sought.
  • Evidence of the alien’s authorship of scholarly articles in the field, in professional or major trade publications or other major media.
  • Evidence of the alien’s original scientific, scholarly, artistic, athletic, or business-related contributions of major significance in the field.
  • Evidence of the display of the alien’s work in the field at artistic exhibitions or showcases.
  • Evidence of commercial successes in the performing arts, as shown by box office receipts or record, cassette, compact disc, or video sales.
  • Evidence that the alien has commanded a high salary or other significantly high remuneration for services, in relation to others in the field.
  • Evidence that the alien has performed in a leading or critical role for organizations or establishments that have a distinguished reputation.

EB-1B: Outstanding Professors and Researchers

Similar to individuals with Extraordinary Ability, “Outstanding” academicians—Professors and Researchers, who can establish a high level or degree of achievement in their fields, may also bypass the more arduous PERM labor certification application. Outstanding Professors or Researchers must be able to prove that:

  • They are recognized internationally as outstanding in a specific academic area,
  • Have at least 3 years of teaching or research experience in their field of endeavor, and
  • Intend to teach or carry out research in that particular field in the United States.

The Outstanding Professor/Researcher must have an offer of employment in his/her field. To fulfill this category, the Outstanding Professor/Researcher must obtain a job offer for:

  • A tenured or tenure-track offer from an accredited university or institution of higher education to teach in the specific academic field, or
  • A similar position with an accredited university or institution of higher education to conduct research in the specific academic field, or
  • A private employer who also employs at least three full-time researchers and has documented accomplishments in the specific academic field.

In order to demonstrate that the Outstanding Professor/Researcher is recognized internationally, one must submit at least two of the following six criteria:

  • Published material in professional publications written by others about the alien’s work in the academic field.
  • Documentation of the alien’s receipt of major prizes or awards for outstanding achievement in the academic field.
  • Documentation of the alien’s membership in associations in the academic field, which require outstanding achievements of their members.
  • Evidence of the alien’s original scientific or scholarly research contributions to the academic field.
  • Evidence of the alien’s authorship of scholarly books or articles (in scholarly journals with international circulation) in the academic field.
  • Evidence of the alien’s participation, either individually or on a panel, as a judge of the work of others in the same or allied academic field.

EB-1C: Multinational Managers and Executives Who Have Transferred to the U.S.

The EB-1 first preference employment-based category is also designed to facilitate international transfer of executive or managerial personnel within multinational companies. The transfers can be between different branches of the same company, or between different companies with one of the following types of relationships:

  • Parent—Subsidiary
  • Home Office—Branch Office
  • Affiliate—Affiliate

In this category, the employee must have worked for the related company abroad, in either a managerial or executive capacity, for at least a one-year period in the three years preceding the transfer. The employee should be coming to the U.S. Company to function in an executive or managerial capacity, or the employee may already be in the U.S. in a non-immigrant visa status such as the L-1A or one of the E visa classifications.